Who We Are
Emergency Management in the City of North Port is under the direction of the Chief of the North Port Fire Rescue District, who also serves as the Emergency Management Director. Daily activities are handled by the Division Chief of Administrative Services and Emergency Management who reports to the Fire Chief/Emergency Management Director. Offices are located at Fire Rescue Headquarters; and may be telephoned at (941) 240-8150. When a disaster is imminent or is in-progress, the City's Emergency Operations Center will open, and with the other City departments, coordinate the preparedness, response and recovery activities of the City.
The mission of Emergency Management is to serve the citizens of the City through effective planning for natural and man-made disasters. Our goal is to save lives and to protect property through coordination of an integrated emergency management system with all emergency response organizations, support services and volunteers. We will be an advocate for greater community efforts, including educating the general public to mitigate and prepare for potential emergencies. We will support efforts to train and exercise emergency responders in both the public and private sectors. We will manage and coordinate efforts toward a rapid recovery from disasters with an effective disaster assistance program.
This Division is committed to effective actions to prevent some disasters and to reduce the impact of those over which we have no control.
- Maintain the City of North Port Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan (CEMP), and develop Standard Operating Guidelines (SOG) for its implementation.
- Coordinate disaster preparedness planning with City departments, to include the base and department-specific Continuity of Operations (COOP) Plans.
- Ensure the City’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is ready for activation at any time.
- Assist the Incident Commander during activations of the City’s EOC.
- Deliver public education programs on disaster preparedness.
- Develop and conduct exercises to evaluate plans and procedures.
- Support the activities of the North Port Community Emergency Response Team (CERT).
- Conduct training classes on emergency management-related topics.
- Liaison with Sarasota County Emergency Management, the Florida Division of Emergency Management, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
- Coordinate State and Federal documentation for post-disaster reimbursement.
- Implement and ensure City-wide compliance with the National Incident Management System.
- Identify grant opportunities to fund mitigation, planning and/or recovery activities.
- Serve as the Program Manager for the City's Emergency Notification System -- CodeRED
The City of North Port has been recognized by the National Weather Service (NWS) as only the third municipality in the State of Florida to achieve the designation of “Storm Ready”.
“This designation is approved for localities which go above and beyond to protect their citizens from the impacts of hazardous weather,” said Richard Berman, City of North Port Emergency Manager. “This readiness should help citizens feel safer knowing that their Emergency Management Officers and the National Weather Service are working together through enhanced planning, education and awareness programs.”
To attain the designation, the City of North Port sponsored a SKYWARN spotter class for City staff and the public, completed training for emergency dispatch personnel, conducted a site visit at the local NWS office in Ruskin, and completed an application process listing the numerous services and information provided by the City of North Port to its citizens. Some of those services include the vast informational pages on the City website with current storm preparation information, live weather stations located at our five fire stations throughout the City, the availability and use of our CodeRED community notification system, our water monitoring stations in creeks and canals and many others.
North Port joins more than 2,200 “Storm Ready” sites in 49 states, Puerto Rico & Guam. All 67 counties in the State of Florida are designated “Storm Ready”, however the City of North Port is only the third municipality in Florida to receive the designation.
The “Storm Ready” program was created in 1999 in Oklahoma to help prepare American communities with the communication and safety skills necessary to help save lives and property before, during, and after an emergency event. In so doing it helps local officials strengthen their emergency management programs and connect with residents to jointly monitor and respond to severe weather events.
Of special significance to our citizens is that by becoming “Storm Ready” our Community Rating System Flood Score should improve, which could then translate into savings for City residents on their annual National Flood Insurance Program insurance premiums.
CodeRED Community Emergency Notification System
The City of North Port has a telephone system to quickly notify residents and business of an emergency or urgent situation.
If you have a telephone line from Verizon Communications (not Wireless), you are automatically included in the system's database. Those who use a cellular phone or Voice Over Internet Phone (VoIP) as their primary number as well as businesses should register their phone number. Required information includes first and last name, street address (physical address, no P.O. boxes), city, state, zip code, and primary phone number, additional phone numbers, text and email addresses can be entered as well.
Register your phone number in the City's CodeRED system. Those without Internet access may call Fire Rescue at (941) 240-8150, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to supply your information over the phone.
When signing up for CodeRED on the enrollment page, if you use Tracfone, Straight Talk, Jitterbug or other prepaid phone services, you may not know who your actual cell phone provider is, as these secondary providers are actually resellers for large carriers. Luckily, there is an easy way to find out. Simply send a text message to your email to learn who provides your cell phone service. When you open the email, you will see the sender is your phone number followed by the cell phone provider. Example: firstname.lastname@example.org (AT&T).
Here are some common providers:
- messaging.sprintpcs.com (Sprint)
- tmomail.net (T-Mobile)
- vmoble.com (Virgin Mobil USA)
- vtext.com (Verizon)
Disaster Emergency Purchasing
During emergencies and large-scale disasters, the City looks to the local business community to provide goods and services for a variety of needs (e.g., food, ice, generators, chain saws, etc.). If your company has supplies, equipment or a service which may be useful during a disaster please complete the Vendor List for Disaster Preparedness and W9 with the City's Purchasing Division.
Local Mitigation Strategic Workgroup
Hazard mitigation is any action taken to permanently reduce or eliminate long-term risk to people and their property from the effects of hazards. Some examples of hazard mitigation include land use planning techniques that limit infrastructure in high hazard areas and programs for retrofitting existing structures to meet new building codes and standards. Ideally, a community can minimize the effects of future hazards through a mix of code enforcement, planning, and responsible development.
Mitigation occurs in many ways through various governmental activities. Together, these activities establish the mitigation goals for a community and provide the framework for effective redevelopment. Existing plans, programs, policies, and ordinances should be reviewed to identify mitigation activities already occurring in a jurisdiction. These independent activities are combined and contained in the Local Mitigation Strategy.
Effective mitigation should in no way be seen as an impediment to the growth and continued development of a community. An overarching philosophy of mitigation should be applied to all decisions related to a community’s growth – so that communities across Florida can grow smarter. The result of incorporating mitigation into development practices will be the creation of safer and more economically resilient communities.
The Sarasota County Unified Local Mitigation Strategy 2016 plan was developed as a multi-jurisdictional, multi-hazard strategy to involve the public, assess the hazards, determine the vulnerability, identify risks, set goals, and identify mitigation activities, and plan for natural and manmade hazards to Sarasota County and the jurisdictions therein.
Adoption of the plan is a multi-jurisdictional function that requires each participating jurisdiction to independently accept and adopt the plan by resolution or ordinance. The specific jurisdictions represented by The Sarasota County Unified Local Mitigation Strategy 2016 plan are:
City of North Port
City of Sarasota
City of Venice
Sarasota County Schools
Sarasota Memorial Hospital
Town of Longboat Key
The 2016 Plan has recently been adopted by the North Port City Commission. If you would like to read the plan or participate in its next update, please click here.